UDRP isn’t meant to settle broad trademark usage disputes.
Abbott Laboratories has tried — and failed — to settle a trademark usage dispute using UDRP.
The company, which makes Ensure nutritional beverages, filed a UDRP against the domain name ensure-nest.com.
A Vietnamese company uses the domain to sell bird nest-related products, which are food and skincare items sold in Asian countries. The website clearly shows Ensure Nest-branded products.
Despite the domain owner not responding to the dispute, Panelist Jeffrey Neuman correctly pointed out that this is a dispute over trademark usage, not cybersquatting, and is beyond the scope of UDRP:
The Panel believes that the determination of whether the Respondent has rights or a legitimate interest to the disputed domain name is dependent on whether or not the Respondent, in selling food items made from bird’s nests, is infringing on Complainant’s trademark rights in the ENSURE mark. This determination, however, exceeds the scope of the UDRP and relies on complex legal issues which are more suitable for the courts to decide as opposed to being decided under the UDRP.
Abbott’s Ensure brand seems like an odd brand for a maker of nest products to target.
Speaking of intellectual property disputes, I wonder if the Respondent has a licensing deal with Disney.